These guys have no business being such tanks, they come with 80 HP and 2/2 base armor for 55f 20g. I get that it’s a Castle unit but it’s also an infantry unit, Crossbows should have an easy time countering it, while right now if the Poles gets +2 armor on them, he can basically flood only Obuch, they trade nearly evenly vs Knights (while costing 1/2 the resources), they destroy anything you can make from the Barracks. They have no business tanking 4 damage from Castle Age Crossbows, let them take 4 damage per shot then they die to 20 shots as opposed to the current 27.
Poles already have a lot going for them, tower rush on Arabia, mining Gold from Stone (which you can see as +50% effective gather rate, imagine Turks but with +50% and not +20% bonus). They also have a very nice tech tree, including Arbalest with Thumb Ring, a very good Hussar and a BIG Castle Age power spike with the all-in Knights which can also be played as early Imp all-in Cavalier.
Oh yes obviously their Folwark economy makes them top tier eco-wise too, you get 10% food immediately by placing farms next to a Folwark, if you research Heavy Plow, that’s 37.5 food per farm, if you count the average number of Farms you drop, you can easily get something in the realm of 400-1000 “free” food during early-to-mid Castle Age.
Obuch right now basically works like Janissary or Conquistador, a unit that is good without upgrades, unlike Poles though, Spanish and Turks have very awkward tech trees which Poles do not (they even get Bombard Cannon for some reason!) so nerf Obuch please.
2/1 armor will still leave them as tanks in melee, beating anything in melee, even Knights/Paladins if you mix in a few Pikemen and/or cheap Cavalier, but they will have 1 unit type they are weak against and won’t be a “1 size fits all” unit. To my knowledge, no melee infantry in this game has 2 base pierce armor because infantry is generally designed to be weak vs ranged units, unless it’s a “fill a civ tech tree gap” type of infantry unit like Huskarl or Eagle Warrior.
Take any infantry UU that resembles Champion in its utilization, such as Woad Raider, Throwing Axeman, Shotel Warrior, Kamayuk, etc. they all have 1 pierce armor even in elite form.